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MacQueen’s Quinterly: Knock-your-socks-off Art and Literature
Issue 14: August 2022
Poem: 145 words
By Gary Grossman


Gone missing overnight, now just clipped 
off stems, where flowers kissed our eyes 
and buds whispered “soon.” 


Rats on stilts, my neighbor Andy calls 
them. Carousing our backyards like local 
ten year-olds in pirate hats. Swashbucklers, 
fearing naught. 

The Captain of our ’hood, an eight-point, 
sacked our backyard reforestation—
stripping bark from magnolia and tulip 
poplar saplings—a single nights’ work 
August 29th. 

Deer are the landscape’s bad habit, like 
Mom’s failure to quit smoking. Deer spank 
me by ensuring I never have 
enough daylily flowers to thicken 
my moo shu or hot and sour. 

The buds, straining to mature like ninth 
graders, are “golden needles” in Cantonese 
cuisine. I like them sautéed, sizzling and 
speckled with red chili flakes, and 
sesame oil. 

Four fence posts in, my optimism 
conjures buds, both flower and taste, and the 
mingling of the two. 

Gary Grossman
Issue 14, August 2022

has been writing poetry for 30 years. His poems may be found, or are forthcoming, in 21 different reviews, most recently: Verse-Virtual, Poetry Life and Times, Black Poppy Review, Trouvaille Review, and Last Stanza Poetry Review. His writing credits include ten years as a columnist for American Angler Magazine. Hobbies include running, music, fishing, gardening, and cooking.

Bio and writing at, respectively:
www.garygrossman.net and

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